Kospi flat as U.S.-China tensions persist
Stocks closed nearly flat Tuesday, paring most earlier gains, in the face of elevating trade tensions between the world's two largest economies. The won rose against the dollar.
The benchmark Kospi edged up 1.41 points, or 0.05 percent, to close at 2,746.47 points.
Trading volume was moderate at about 555 million shares worth some 11.6 trillion won ($9.7 billion), with losers outnumbering gainers 544 to 313.
Foreigners sold a net 94 billion won, while institutions bought 39 billion won and retail investors purchased 46 billion won.
Stocks came off to a strong start on hopes of strong corporate earnings but trimmed most of their earlier gains in the afternoon.
Rising tensions between the United States and China hurt investor sentiment. The U.S. tightened export regulations on China, leading to stock price fall in China and Hong Kong.
"The U.S.-China issue, along with the rising U.S. bond yields, soured investor sentiment and reduced demand for risky assets," said Mirae Asset Securities analyst Park Gwang-nam.
Samsung Electronics rose 0.68 percent to 73,500 won, and chipmaker SK hynix grew 1.63 percent to 125,000 won.
Pharmaceutical company Samsung Biologics jumped 4.85 percent to 800,000 won on the country's surging coronavirus cases, with Celltrion gaining 3.18 percent to 162,000 won.
Automaker Hyundai Motor moved down 1.07 percent to 184,500 won while its affiliate Kia rose 700 won to 78,900 won.
The electronic vehicle battery maker LG Energy Solution retreated 1.09 percent to 542,000 won on profit-taking after releasing its corporate earnings report.
SK innovation dropped 5.74 percent to 213,500 won, and LG Display slipped 0.78 percent to 19,150 won.
The local currency closed at 1,197.7 won to the dollar, down 3 won from the previous session's close.
The Kosdaq lost 4.13 points, or 0.46 percent, to close at 895.27.
Bond prices, which move inversely to yields, closed lower. The yield on three-year government bonds gained 6.7 basis points to 2.303 percent, and the yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond increased 0.7 basis point to 1.91 percent.
BY SHIN HA-NEE, YONHAP [email@example.com]